Help Urged for Flood Victims on 2 Continents

CASTEL GANDOLFO, Italy, AUG. 28, 2002 ( John Paul II said he was praying for the victims of flooding in Europe and Asia and urged international help for relief efforts.

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At today’s general audience, held at the papal summer residence, the Pope said that disaster areas in China, the Czech Republic and Germany will need to rebuild.

One report has quoted China’s Minister of Water Resources as saying the disasters there had killed more than 1,300. In the Czech Republic, 16 have died and damage has been estimated at up to $2.8 billion.

“While I assure all of my closeness in affection and prayer,” the Holy Father said, “I encourage and bless the competition in solidarity that has been noted among nations and the populations themselves, victims of the painful events.”

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